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Published 13th Mar 2017

From left, Middlesbrough College's Tom Metcalfe, NatWest's Nickie Kilkenny and Carillion's Simon Jenkins

Tomorrow's entrepreneurial stars emerged victorious from the dragons’ den at Middlesbrough College recently, having wowed business leaders with their ideas.

Students pitched their start-up businesses to a panel of dragons including representatives from multinational construction company Carillion, NatWest and the college.

A trio by the name of Baker’s Dozen scooped the top prize with the idea to sell wholesale baked goods and bread to discerning punters in Middlesbrough.

The three lads – Sammy Al-tamimi, Ruaridh Thomas, both 17, and Charlie Barnfather, 16 – had successfully tested their idea as a pop-up bread shop within the college.

Having turned a profit the three now have the opportunity to operate their own stall at Middlesbrough’s Hill Street Centre for a week.

Nickie Kilkenny, business growth enabler at NatWest and one of the dragons at the Middlesbrough College Enterprise Week event, was impressed by Baker’s Dozen’s vision.

She said: “They were brimming with enthusiasm for the business and had already seen early success testing their idea in the college.

“Now the prize to spend a week in the Hill Street Centre is the perfect opportunity to develop their idea and get to grips with all the detail they’ll need to consider in running a food business.

“We’re routing for them.”

In a close second to Baker’s Dozen was 18-year-old Samman Khan a business and law student from Thornaby with a novel app idea – Reidius.

Simon Jenkins, commercial advisor at Carillion and another of the dragons, said: “I was very impressed by Samman’s idea. I can see there being a big market for Reidius. The way Samman had thought about branding for the idea gave it extra credibility too.”

Samman, who has ambitions to go on to study at university while pursuing her business idea, will join Baker’s Dozen at the Hill Street Centre to conduct market research and have support from business growth enabler Nickie Kilkenny.

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